Violence In The Neighborhoods: Young Adults Biggest Challenge In Society

by Lady T

How would you feel if your 19-year-old son who was a college student was found shot to death or beaten until he took his last breath? What would you do if your 21-year-old daughter was raped and brutally beaten to where she was lying in a coma? So many of our young males and femalesí lives are interrupted due to the extreme violence in the neighborhoods. This kind of activity is making our communities unsafe, leaving young adults and the upcoming generation less hope of survival. Young adults are faced with many challenges as they develop into the next phase in their life. Peer pressure, poverty, racial diversity, seeking employment and family abuse are just some of the issues young adults are coping with today. However, violence in the neighborhoods is one of the biggest challenges young adults face in todayís society.

Although drugs and alcohol play a big role in young adults lives, the violence in the neighborhoods has become a worldwide epidemic in the communities. Violence is the leading cause of deaths among young adults. Young adult males canít even walk down the street, go to the store or even stand at the bus stop without fearing he would be physically assaulted or gunned down. One of my worst fears came to light when my 19-year-old son was physically assaulted by four unknown males. He had just landed a new job and I was happy for him. My frown quickly turned into a frown when I received a phone call saying my son was in an ambulance on his way to the hospital. He suffered injuries to his head, upper and lower ligaments. I am grateful my son is alive but I still fear he or his younger brother may become a victim of gun violence.

According to the United States Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, eighty percent of deaths are due to injuries and violence to people ages 30 and younger. It also states that the other twenty percent is based on chronic disease infections. Researchers from New Jersey came to the conclusion that it is normal for those who are exposed to violence to develop PTSD. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder occurs in a significant minority of people exposed to circumstances that causes any kind of threat towards survival. Symptoms that could lead to PTSD include sexual assault, physical assault and indirect or direct exposure to violence.

Based on statistics African Americans are more likely to be exposed to violence in the neighborhoods than Caucasians. Science World reports, wealthy Caucasian Americans and those living in the suburbs are not as affected by violence like those living in poverty, rural and urban communities. Statistic also show that African American young adults males are mostly affected by violence in the neighborhoods where females are more affected by domestic and family violence.

Young adult males are the primary targets of gun violence. Getting shot is a young males biggest fear of violence. There is no safe zone no matter where they go. Young males are more at risk of losing their life than young adult females. In Chicago as of February 21, 2016, eighty-four males were killed and 325 wounded. For the females there were only eight deaths and 30 wounded in the same time frame.

Of all the cities with high crime rates Chicago has the highest crime rate and murder rate in this country. Last year nearly 3,000 people were victims of gun violence. This year the number of shooting victims have reached nearly 500, with one-third of those victims being young adults. With only two months in the new year the number of homicides have almost doubled with eighty-eight murders compared to last January and February when there were only fifty-two. This is what you call de ja vu. In 1997 there were over 100 homicides within the first two months of the year. That year ended with close to 800 deaths. If there is already been over 400 shootings and more than 100 murders in Chicago, the numbers could reach over 1000 by the end of August.

Violence in the neighborhoods has proved to be a hindrance in young adults. How can they move forward in their lives when they donít feel safe? Do they need to start carrying guns and knives for their own protection? Young adults who have graduated from high school who are reaching for higher goals are stripped from a fair chance at survival. Violence comes in different forms but it all has an effect on everyone in the community.

Families, community residents, community leaders, community organizations need to work together to help build a safer environment for our communities. I was born and raised in Chicago. There may have been shootings and people getting beat up and robbed, but the crime rate was nowhere nearly as high as it is today. Chicago has become a dangerous place to live, especially for children and young adults. Cook Countyís State Attorney Anita Alvarez predicted 700 murders in 2016. Instead of predicting the number of dealths we need to come up a solution to protect our youth from being massacred and prevent the murder rate from growing. We need the up and coming generation to have something positive to look forward to. Many of our young males become violators because they feel they have no other outlet. It is time to make a change starting today.

Violence In The Neighborhoods: Young Adults Biggest Challenge In Society by Lady T

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